The mandate of the Constitution is to ensure equality, freedom, justice and dignity of all individuals including the victims of drug abuse.
Article 47 of Part IV (Directive Principles of State Policy) is particularly relevant with regard to the victims of drug abuse. It provides that the State shall regard the raising of the level of nutrition and the standard of living of its people and the improvement of public health as among its primary duties and, in particular, the State shall endeavour to bring about prohibition of consumption, except for medicinal purposes, of intoxicating drinks and of drugs which are injurious to health.
The Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act (NDPS), 1985, was enacted, inter alia, to curb drug abuse. The Act provides that the Government may establish centres for identification, treatment, education, after-care, rehabilitation, social reintegration of drug addicts. Further, the Government may also supply any narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances to drug addicts where such supply is a medical necessity.
The objectives of the NDPS Act, 1985, are:
- To consolidate and amend the law relating to narcotic drugs
- To make stringent provisions for the control and regulation of operations relating to narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances
- To provide for the forfeiture of property derived from, or used in, illicit traffic in narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances
- To implement the provisions of the International Convention on Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances